The Keynote Speakers

We are happy to announce the following Keynote Speakers at our symposium.

Yan-Ru Lou

Yan-Ru Lou is Adjunct Professor of the Division of Pharmaceutical Bioscience at the University of Helsinki. The group of Dr. Lou develops functional and predictive cell-based tools for drug research and personalized medicine. She developed a three-dimensional (3D) culture systems for human pluripotent stem cells and human cancer cells.

In particular, the group aims to generate functional hepatocytes with 3D configuration as drug development tools for drug and chemical testing. They apply advanced cell culture technologies and novel biomaterials, along with molecular biology methods. They advance fundamental understanding of how matrix and biomaterials affect cell behavior and performance and are developing new cell-based technologies.

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Bruno Stieger

Bruno Stieger is Professor working at the Department of Clinical Pharmacology and Toxicology at the University Hospital Zurich. Prof. Stieger’s group focuses on hepatocellular transporters and the mechanisms of lipid secretion into bile. They cloned the major bile salt and drug transport systems of hepatocytes and identified the founding members of the SLC10A1 and the SLCO gene families including NTCP, several OATPs and BSEP.

The current research interests of the department are related to understand the role of the interaction of drugs with transport systems in the development of acquired liver disease, the investigation of molecular mechanisms of canalicular bile formation with a focus on biliary lipids and regulation of the expression of drug and bile salt transporters.

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Lars Zender

Lars Zender is Professor and Head of the Outpatient Clinic for Gastrointestinal Oncology within the Comprehensive Cancer Center Tübingen and Department of Internal Medicine VIII. He received the Leibniz-Preis in 2014 for his work in liver regeneration. Therefor, he and his group apply a functional genetic approach to identify gene targets that can be exploited to increase the regenerative capacity of hepatocytes.

He identifies a mechanism of sorafenib resistance in liver cancer via in vivo RNAi screening. He established a mouse tumor model for therapy-resistant solid tumors to dissect tumor suppressor networks in gastrointestinal tumors and to identify and validate new therapeutic target genes.

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Matteo Iannacone

Matteo Iannacone is Director of the Intravital Imaging Facility and  Ad hoc Professor for Pathology and Basic Immunology at the San Raffaele University in Milan. His research investigates how viruses are handled within draining lymph-nodes upon peripheral inoculation and how antiviral immune responses are generated. His group is trying to dissect the pathogenetic mechanisms underlying liver immunopathology during viral hepatitis and to discover and characterize novel adjuvants for adaptive immune responses.

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Lorenza Alice D'Alessandro

Lorenza Alice D’Alessandro is a Team leader in the Division of Systems Biology of Signal Trasnduction at DKFZ German Cancer Research Center in Heidelberg. The goal of the division is to gain insights into molecular mechanisms that regulate cellular decisions, and to address their impact on behaviour at tissue and organ level.

The main projects are focussed on the unravelling of principal mecahnisms of erythropoietin (Epo)-mediated cellular decisions in the hematopoietic system. Investigate the bridging from cellular to the whole organ level during liver regeneration and attaining insights into altered regulations in cancer and prediction of strategies for efficient intervention in diseases (cancer, drug-induced liver injury, viral infection).This knowledge will be used to establish integrated models of signal pathways, to link them to gene regulations as well as cell-cell communication and to induce cell cycle progression and cell survival

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